Only in Arizona

Yuma City Employee Crushed by a 16-Foot Cactus

A City of Yuma employee was crushed by a 16-foot saguaro cactus this week, according to city officials.

William Mason, a water-distribution technician with the city's utilities department, has been in the intensive-care unit at a hospital since Tuesday.

According to the city, Mason was checking out a water leak in the Del Oro Estates subdivision in Yuma when the gigantic cactus apparently fell over and pinned him to the ground.

Mason was out there working with a crew, so they were able to free him and seek medical attention for him.

Mason has multiple injuries, but his back and legs were "particularly" injured, the city says.

Why exactly the cactus fell on him is "under investigation."

The city notes that saguaros weigh between 3,200 and 4,800 pounds, and are usually anchored by a long tap root.

A Yuma newspaper says nearly 150 cactus spines were removed from Mason's body.

KEEP PHOENIX NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Matthew Hendley
Contact: Matthew Hendley